Contemplations for San Francisco – my first seven entries

Yesterday, I posted my thoughts about competing in the brand new San Francisco Bay International Photo Show.  And I received some great suggestions from you, my blog readers – about what I should enter and what I might want to save for other competitions.

And just for the record, I paid for ten entries into the show.  If I feel I need more, I can purchase more up until the May 10th deadline.  But for the moment, I’ve submitted seven pictures already.  And yes, I can add or edit or delete or re-submit as I please, up until the deadline.

The Mahari Stream. Nikon Df camera, Vivitar 19mm f/3.8 lens, f/11, ISO 200, 1/2 second. (c) Chuck Miller, all rights reserved.

Among the seven entries I’ve already designated for the show are two that I took this year.  One is The Mahari Stream, my photo where I essentially got lost on the way to Mount Rainier in Washington State, and captured a brilliant stream for my efforts.  And I promise you, I could visit Mount Rainier ten times from now and I’ll never find that waterflow ever again.

Ladies Make Their Own Entrances. Nikon Df camera, Vivitar 19mm f/3.8 lens, 1/125 sec., ISO 400, f/5.6. Photo (c) Chuck Miller, all rights reserved.

I also designated my posed picture, Ladies Make Their Own Entrance, for the event.  I’m really liking the way this picture turned out, and I have a very good feeling that Ladies will see more than one competition this year.

But for every picture I DID consider for San Francisco, there were plenty of photos that I said, “uh, maybe not.”  Those included some of my splitfilm photos, like Niagara 1970 1995 2016 and Jessica: Instamatic Dichotomy, both of which I really felt had great potential, but I’m not looking just for “great potential” here.

What the Grasshopper Saw. Nikon Df camera, Kenko 180-degree fisheye lens. Photo (c) Chuck Miller, all rights reserved.

Two of my successful images from last year’s Competition Season, What The Grasshopper Saw and Step and Pivot, are also among my submitted entries for San Francisco.  Let’s face it.  Everybody loves What The Grasshopper Saw.  And when I think about the fact that I had that Kenko fisheye lens for nearly a decade – and finally, I found a great use for it – that’s awesome in and of itself.

Step and Pivot. AGFA Clipper Special f/6.3 camera, Kodak Ektar 100 film. Photo by Chuck Miller.

And looky looky, it’s my dancing neon photo of a Colonie shoe store signage.  Taken in the middle of the night, the photographer had only one working foot at the time – and this photo STILL picked up some serious love at the Photo Regionals in 2017.

Oh yeah, speaking of photos that were successful at the Photo Regionals…

Vivaldi’s Pond. Kodak Medalist II camera, four images combined in lenticular print. Photo (c) Chuck Miller, all rights reserved.

If it’s accepted … I’m submitting a new print of Vivaldi’s Pond to the event.  Yep.  My lenticular print of the four seasons at a Corinth waterway.  This photo, along with Step and Pivot and my Icelandic sheep The Jumbuck, received lots of love at the Photo Regionals.  Now let’s see if it can earn some West Coast love as well.

Jesus Saves. Nikon F100 camera, Nikkor 300mm f/5.6 lens, Revolog Tesla 2 film. Photo by Chuck Miller.

I also submitted two other entries for San Francisco – Jesus Saves, my Revolog Tesla film shot of the neon signage at the downtown Albany mercy mission.  Jesus Saves is one of only two Chuck Miller artworks – the other being The Jumbuck – to claim blue ribbons in three different photo competitions.  I’m okay if it claims a fourth silk, no matter what color.

Aerochrome Falls. Kodak Medalist II camera, Kodak EIR infrared “Aerochrome” slide film with orange filter. Photo by Chuck Miller.

And finally, I broke out Aerochrome Falls for the San Francisco competition.  Yes, with the magenta trees and the black water against a crisp blue sky, Aerochrome Falls shows off the power of the rare Kodak EIR infrared film.  And yes, I still have a few rolls of the film in my freezer.  I might shoot one or two this summer, I’m thinking another Adirondacks trip is in the offing.

So what else did I leave out?  One of my readers suggested that there might be plenty of eclipse shots this year, so entering The Cumulo-Nimbus Eclipse might get the photo lost in the mix.  Ditto for wilderness shots like Faith and Frost or Parabola or Troubled Bridge Over Water.

Solarcan 368. Solarcan pinhole camera, 10-month exposure. Photo (c) Chuck Miller, all rights reserved.

I’m also reserving a spot in the competition for one of the Solarcan photos.  Right now, the best one I’ve pulled is from Solarcan #368, which endured a ten-month blaze to create this stunning image.  Now mind you, I still have two other Solarcans baking away, and if I find a better picture from them – either from Solarcan 369 (which is currently two months away from a six-month harvest) or Solarcan 366 (which is currently two months away from a one-year harvest), I’ll do a swapout.  But damn … that Solarcan shot is really capturing my attention.  It’ll be tough for me to harvest one of the other cans early just to see if I’ve gotten a better image than this one.

So that’s seven with a possible eighth.  And two more photos that are either still in my archive … or that I haven’t taken yet.

This is good.  Really, really good.

I know I’m getting my hopes up … nothing’s been accepted yet, and I’m still months away from any sort of judging … but it’s nice to be able to look at what you’ve done over the past few years, and find some images that just say, “Hey Chuck, give me one more opportunity,” or “Hey Chuck, I can’t wait for this opportunity,” or even, “Put me in this show, and I promise you I’ll make you smile.”

I gotta tell you … I’m really feeling energized for Competition Season 2018.

And that’s an amazing feeling.